Sary Joudah
Age: 36
Occupation: Speech Therapist
Hometown: Houston, TX
Marathons Completed: 7

Sary Joudah started running in 2000 and training for marathons would later lead him on his weight loss journey. Joudah completed his first marathon in 2001. He followed training guidelines from a running book and finished 15 minutes over the time limit, missing the chance to collect his first medal.

“I was so tired and disappointed at the same time that I didn’t realize that I ran a marathon,” Joudah said. “Training was much harder than it should be and race day was a six-to seven-hour battle that left me discouraged and overwhelmed.”

Joudah before joining running group Kenyan Way

He would train for three to four months and drop 20 to 30 pounds, which would be enough to finish under six hours. Joudah continued to run four marathons weighing 250 pounds or more before taking a break from running all together.

“When I decided to return to running in 2008, I knew that I needed a lifestyle change as well,” Joudah said.

He joined Kenyan Way training group which he credits much of his transformation during the early stages of his weight loss. Since 2008, Joudah has lost 85 pounds with the help of running and started an exercise blog to help him stay on track. With the blog and running for his fitness, he also changed his eating habits, which was the last step in his weight loss.

“This weight loss journey has yielded many exciting changes. Not only did I change my approach to stress management, but I also changed my abilities as a runner,” Joudah said.

Joudah running the 2011 Chevron Houston Marathon after losing 85 pounds

At the 2012 Chevron Houston Marathon, Joudah hopes to run his seventh marathon
under four hours. And one day qualify for the Boston Marathon.

Joudah’s advice to those who would like to take up running: “Start with shorter distances and see if you catch the “running bug.” Perhaps one day you’ll start running longer distances and never look back or perhaps not, but there’s only one way to find out.”

For those who are looking at running their first marathon: “If you dedicate the time and mental energy to proper training, nutrition and set reasonable goals, you’ll find that finish line sooner than you think! The way I look at it, there wouldn’t be a marathon running boom if it was impossible.”

You can follow Sary Joudah and his training diary “My quest to lose 100 pounds (or
more)” here.

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